Once again, the Duterte administration has shown its incapability in rationally addressing the urgent problem of the global pandemic corona virus disease (Covid)-19. Instead of prioritizing funds and resources and mobilizing the health sector to fight the said pandemic, it has intensified the presence and repression if state forces and set up checkpoints in the urban and rural communities. In the guise of enhanced quarantine, the people are subjected to intense scrutiny in military checkpoints, and their economic life is disrupted. In the Ilocos-Cordillera, farmers are being prohibited to tend to their rice fields and to procure basic commodities. These measures, coupled with the lack of adequate health services and relief, further serve to exacerbate the growing fear and panic among the people. Despite the declaration of unilateral ceasefire, military operations continue to occupy targeted areas and sow terror. Areas where there are ongoing military operations are in 22 barangays in the municipalities of Malibcong, Lacub and Tubo in Abra, 18 barangays in the municipalities of Balbalan, Pinukpuk and Pasil in Kalinga, 15 barangays of Besao, Sagada, Bontoc, Bauko and Tadian in Mountain Province, and in the municipalities of Quirino, Cervantes, Salcedo, Santa Lucia, and San Emilio in Ilocos Sur, among others. Instead of helping people deal with the said pandemic, state forces bring their own brand of virus in the communities — their baseless fascist paranoia.

The people needs immediate and adequate relief and health services, together with enough funds and support for health workers and hospital facilities to address this epidemic. The Cordillera People’s Democratic Front unites with the call of the Communist Party of the Philippines for collective people’s action. The whole revolutionary armed movement in the country has a long history of actively addressing various illnesses in its areas and builds health committees and wages health campaigns such as sanitation, herbal remedies, nutrition among others. In line with the program of the national democratic revolution for a free, scientific and mass-oriented health service, medical officers of the New People’s Army devote their time and skills in studying and treating various illnesses and epidemics afflicting the masses.

As long as the Duterte regime insists on its military mindset, they will reap the flaming resistance of the people and further drive the people to the path of revolutionary armed struggle.

Fight for adequate relief and health services!
Resist the militarization in the countryside!
Advance a scientific and mass-oriented health service!
Advance the revolutionary armed struggle!
Oust the US-Duterte regime!